New SCD-C555ES First impressions....

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Chip E, Oct 21, 2001.

  1. Chip E

    Chip E Screenwriter

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    Well, i moved my Sony M-333ES 400 disc mega changer outta the rack (only holds five components). The whole mega changer thing just isn't for me. I had a Sony CA80ES five disc changer before the mega changer and regret trading it for the M-333ES. I decided to get a SACD changer and the SCD-C555ES looked to be a great all around player but, VERY expensive. The price came down from $1700.00 to $1200.00 (list) recently so, i new i could get it cheaper online AND from an authorized "ES" dealer. Oade Bros ( www.oade.com ) is selling them for $775.00 + $25.00 shipping so, i jumped on it. I looked at it at my local Tweeter several times without wasteing anyones time there knowing theyed never come down to a price i'd probably be willing to pay.
    Basically, i wanted a five disc changer that would be sonically better sounding than CA80ES and, why not have it plays SACD's and what the hell, why not multi channel SACD's while i'm at it, lol.. For now, i just hooked it up via digital coax connection and it does not dissapoint! It really sounds great on my humble system.(B&K 307,PSB Stratus SilverTexti main's,SVS 20-39PC sub)
    I really like the fact that this player has optical AND digital coax out. I really don't have any SACD's yet but, i'll head of to Best Buy and Tower records to pick some up over the next couple weeks.
    - Chip
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  2. Joe Casey

    Joe Casey Stunt Coordinator

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    Chip,
    If your receiver provides for an analog pass-thru, also try using the analog outs of this player for redbook CD. You may be surprised.
    You'll definitely require an analog bypass for listening to SACD's.
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    Q
    [Edited last by Joe Casey on October 21, 2001 at 06:51 PM]
     
  3. Chip E

    Chip E Screenwriter

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    Joe,
    The B&K 307 does have Stereo Direct mode and i will be trying some analog cables soon... I threw some Peter Gabrail on after i got it situated in the rack and the sound was incredible via the digital coax.. I was glad to see Sony finally was including coax out on some of their players. Alot of their more recent cd players only had optical out. I didn't have a chance to do a whole lot of listening today though. [​IMG]
    - Chip
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  4. Robin Banks

    Robin Banks Extra

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    Welcome to the world of SACD!
    I recently purchased the SCD-C333ES from Oade about two months ago. ($570 total including shipping.) BTW, Oade is great place to shop. I would recommend them to anyone who is interested in Sony SACD players.
    As for the player, all that I can say is, "What a bargain!" SACD is great! Honestly, I was really trying to get the "old" SCD-777ES stereo player, but I guess I was to late. Oh well. LOL! Seriously, I think that you made a great choice. The 555 is based on the 333, but offers multichannel sound. Some have even said that the 555 sounds better in stereo mode. Personally, I think that would be tough to beat. Ha!
    Anyway, I would highly recommend that you break in your 555 before you listen critically. Yes, it does get better. I had to let my 333 burn in for one whole week before the sound got better for CD's. SACD's were fantastic out of the box, but CD sound was not quite up to par for my tastes. Surprisingly, out of the box, the 333 sounded no better with CD's than my Sony S7000 DVD player. I had read that the Sony players needed about 150 to 300 hours of break in time before they really started to sound great. So, I unhooked the 333 from the system, hooked up a pair of cheap interconnects to the jacks, popped in a combination of five SACD's and CD's and let the player run 24-7 for a little over a week.
    When I hooked the 333 back up to my system, my Krell integrated was MUCH happier. It was like night and day as far as CD's were concerned. And now that the unit has even more time on it, it sounds a little better than the first burn in. Anyway, I think you get the point! LOL!
    Oh yeah, try http://www.acousticsounds.com for some great prices on SACD's. Good luck!
     
  5. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

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    Chip, definitely try the analog outputs on your 'C555ES. You have a great receiver there, but I would be interested to hear which connection option sounds better to your ears. As was said here, you will have to use the analog outputs for SACDs.
    My 'C555ES came today, and I set it up a few hours ago. So far, so good. Build quality was no surprise, given how many times I looked at the player at Tweeter and the fact that I've had a 'C333ES in the second system since April. Still, having lived with the 'C555ES for a few hours, I am quite pleased with its operation.
    I started off playing a few CDs and stereo SACDs through the stereo analog outputs to my NAD C 370 stereo amp. The 'C555ES is solid with both formats, but CDs sound a bit thin. That could be a result of comparing them to SACDs and possibly because the player needs to break in as Robin suggested. As an example, I compared the James Taylor Hourglass CD to the SACD in stereo mode, and the SACD is significantly better. Don't get me wrong. CDs sound quite good, but SACD is SACD.
    After an hour or so, I finally got around to listening to multi-channel SACDs (I only have four). My initial impression is quite favorable, though the Billy Joel The Stranger and James Taylor Hourglass discs do put you in the middle of the band. Thus far, I prefer stereo SACD in many respects, perhaps because I am a bit of a stereo purist and also because my main stereo system is considerably better than my modest home theater system.
    I am going to continue to run the 'C555ES with CDs, stereo SACDs, and multi-channel SACDs to see if I observe any sort of break-in. I'd like to hear your impressions of SACD down the road.
    By the way, I too am glad that Sony is providing coaxial digital outputs on its ES SACD players (the SCD-CE775 and 'XE670 only have optical digital outputs). I always found it disappointing that the CDP-CA80ES and Sony ES megachangers have no coaxial digital outputs.
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  6. Rob Sitze

    Rob Sitze Auditioning

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    The very sparse specs I can find online for this unit suggest a "multichannel management system." A few multichannel SACD's implement the ".1" LFE channel as a full range overhead channel. (from dmprecords.com, Telarc, etc)
    Question:
    Does this player support switching or redirecting the LFE signal output to LFE or rear center inputs on the pre-amp?
    By remote?
    ;-)
    Thanks!
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  7. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

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    Rob, in the owner's manual for the 'C555ES, I see no ability to redirect the LFE channel elsewhere. In other words, I don't see any way for the user to control this parameter as desired. With the multi-channel management function, you can select the following three settings with no subwoofer:
    "5 - Large": Use this setting if you have large mains, a large center speakers, and large surrounds, with no subwoofer.
    "FRT - Large": Use this setting if you have large mains, a small center speaker, and small surrounds, with no subwoofer.
    "No - CNTR": Use this setting if you have large mains and large surrounds, with no subwoofer or center speakers.
    In these modes, I don't know what happens to the LFE channel, if a disc has one. The LFE information may be funneled to the mains because the mains are automatically set to "large" if you indicate no subwoofer.
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  8. John Morris

    John Morris Guest

    Keith: Can you set the player for large fronts, small surrounds plus a subwoofer? Does it have any capability for setting the crossover? If not, is it automatically set for 80Hz?
    BTW, do you want to sell your scd-c333es two channel SACD?
    Thanks,
    John
    [Edited last by John Morris on October 22, 2001 at 09:13 PM]
     
  9. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

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    John, I don't have the manual for the 'C555ES in front of me, but I think there is a multi-channel management setting for two large fronts, a small center speaker, two small surrounds, and a subwoofer. You made no mention of a center speaker, and I'm not sure off-hand what the 'C555ES offers as far as settings with no center speaker.
    I see no ability to dial in the crossover on the 'C555ES. From a cursory read of the owner's manual, I see no mention of a fixed crossover setting either.
    The 'C333ES is not for sale. It is in a separate system in another room. The 'C555ES is feeding my A/V receiver for multi-channel SACD in my home theater as well as the stereo amp in my main stereo system, which is also in the home theater room. However, the 'C333ES is in my second stereo system, which is separate.
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    [Edited last by KeithH on October 22, 2001 at 11:06 PM]
     
  10. Rob Sitze

    Rob Sitze Auditioning

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    Thanks for the information Keith. Looks like the only solution to realize that overhead channel is by re-directing the patch cords or using an external switch.
    Not sure which is worse . . . hate to wear out the patch cords, but also hate to run the signal through another set of connections.
    Oh well.
    Hey Sony! Quess what feature we would like to see on future SACD players! [​IMG]
    I may wait a bit to upgrade my 9000ES . . .
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  11. Chip E

    Chip E Screenwriter

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    Yeah, i'm also running it 24/7 to faciltate break-in.. I still haven't had a chance to buy any SACD's due my extremely heavy work schedule right now. I'm working on a new Light Rail prodject in South Jersey,60 hrs a week, (i'm a Union concrete finisher)on the waterfront in Camden (right across the Ben Franklin Bridge from center city Philly). I need to buy some new cables and i'm not sure how much i want to, or should spend...(Monster or CATs)
    - Chip
    [​IMG]
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  12. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

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    Chip, can I suggest that you not break in the 'C555ES 24/7, if you are doing what I think you are doing? When you say 24/7, do you mean with the player simply turned on 24/7 or playing a disc in repeat mode 24/7? I would be very concerned about the latter. A good number of people on Audio Asylum have experienced TOC errors with Sony SACD players (i.e., an inability of the player to read disc TOCs), and many of them have claimed to play discs in repeat mode 24/7 to break in the component. I feel it is wise to break in a component as you listen to it. That is, let it break in naturally. For one thing, I don't see what the rush is. Furthermore, I don't feel the players are designed to play discs 24/7, so such practices could accelerate the demise of the laser assembly. That's just my feeling on the matter. However, people say that simply leaving a solid-state component on does not allow it to break in. You need to actually use it (play discs). With tube components, leaving the component on is said to break it in (or burn in the tubes, as is often stated).
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  13. Jay Mitchosky

    Jay Mitchosky Producer

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    If you really want bass management for this application check out Outlaw's new ICBM. It allows adjustable crossovers for 6.1 channels. Very, very cool and completely effective. And dirt cheap to boot!
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    "No one can hear when you're screaming in digital."
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  14. Chip E

    Chip E Screenwriter

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    Keith, actually, i thought it was on 24/7 but, it was really just cycling through the five discs once.. I did this a few times but now, i won't. Thanks pal.
    - Chip
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  15. Mario_C

    Mario_C Stunt Coordinator

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    Has anybody compared the SCD-C555ES to the SCD-XA777ES?
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